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Prince George's Community Council archives


Prince George's Community Council archives
Prince George's Community Council
Collection number:
0.75 linear feet
Inclusive dates:
Collection Area:
State of Maryland and Historical Collections
Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries, Hornbake Library, College Park, MD 20742. Tel: 301-405-9212, Fax: 301-314-2709, Email:

The Prince George's Community Council, a federation of community organizations, was founded in 1919 as an attempt to find solutions to local problems in education, social service, health and sanitation, home economics, agriculture, roads, law enforcement, and recreation. The collection also touches upon the issues of tobacco, play grounds, county home rule, the community chest, child hygiene, and tuberculosis. The council's records include its constitution, ledgers, correspondence, and minutes.

Important Information for Users of the Collection


This collection is open for research.

Preferred citation:

Prince George's Community Council archives, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Publication rights:

Photocopies of original materials may be provided for a fee and at the discretion of the curator. Please see our Duplication of Materials policy for more information. Queries regarding publication rights and copyright status of materials within this collection should be directed to the appropriate curator.


This collection is PROCESSED.

Historical Note

The Prince George's County Community Council (PGCCC) was organized at the end of World War I in May 1919 as a federation of community organizations and as an outgrowth of the work done by the men's and women's County Councils of Defense. The emphasis of the Council's activities was to make a coordinated effort at understanding and solving local problems in the areas of education, social service, health and sanitation, home economics, agriculture, roads, law enforcement, and recreation.

The Council met twice a year, usually in May or June and November or December, and the meetings typically lasted an entire day. By paying annual dues of $2.00, community organizations were entitled to send four voting delegates and as many other members as desired to the Council's meetings. A diverse group of associations belonged to the Council, including the Women's Club of Laurel, the Beltsville Grange, the College Park Home and School Association, the Vansville Farmer's Club, the Ardmore Citizens Association, and the Women's Christian Temperance Union of Hyattsville. In addition to reports from standing committees, meetings featured speakers, a luncheon, and some form of entertainment. Guest speakers included, among others, professors, representatives from state agencies, and Red Cross officials; the county's public health nurse, social service worker, and extension agent gave reports at meetings regularly. Speakers covered a wide variety of topics. Titles of presentations included: "Training Women for Rural Leadership," "The Future of the High Schools of the County," "What Is the Best Solution of the County Alms House Problem," and "Relation of Health of White People as Affected by Colored People."

Since the Council met only twice a year, smaller committees carried on most of its work. There were, for example, a Committee on County Taxation, the Alms-House Committee, and the Public Health Committee. By working with local officials and businessmen as well as state legislators, the PGCCC was able to make changes that members felt improved the quality of life of county citizens. In a letter dated February 12, 1929, C. P. Close, president of the Council, described in detail some of the Council's activities. According to Close, the council was "instrumental in having a system of police courts established to handle minor cases which previously had swamped the county court." Members also worked with the Capitol Park and Planning Commission to develop parks and roadways in the county, as had been done in the District of Columbia, and the Council worked diligently to raise funds for the salaries of public health nurses.

Members elected George Waters, Jr., as the organization's first president, and T. P. Littlepage, who served as president from 1920 until 1921, followed Waters. In 1922, members elected C. P. Close to the presidency, and he remained in this position until 1933, when W. B. Posey succeeded him. W. A. Duvall was the president of the organization in 1935, and H. J. Patterson presided from 1936 until 1939. P. E. Clark followed Patterson as president in 1940. The date of the Council's dissolution is not known; no mention of disbanding the Council is made in the last minutes included in the collection, dated June 6, 1940.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The records of the Prince George's County Community Council span the period 1919 to 1940. The collection includes correspondence, meeting agendas, minutes, and reports as well as membership lists and a financial ledger, all of which document the Council's efforts to solve local problems.

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

Mrs. Charles E. Janes deposited the records at the University of Maryland Libraries in 1941.

Processing Information

Processed by:

Processed by Jennifer Evans, March 2003.

Processing note:

Metal fasteners were removed and replaced with acid-free strips covered by plastic clips. Handwritten dates, which were probably added the first time the collection was processed, in the upper, right-hand corner of some of the meeting records were retained, unless obviously incorrect.

Encoded by:

EAD markup created using EAD database in Microsoft Access. Markup completed by Henry Allen, July 2004.

Arrangement of Collection

The collection is organized as 3 (three) series.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1: Correspondence, 1919-1932 and 1937 (238 items)

Series I is comprised primarily of correspondence from council presidents or secretaries to members of the Council requesting service on a particular committee or to prospective speakers for the meetings. Arrangement is chronological.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Correspondence, 1919-1937 and undated series 1box 1folder 1
Correspondence, 1919-1937 and undated series 1box 1folder 2
Correspondence, 1919-1937 and undated series 1box 1folder 3
Correspondence, 1919-1937 and undated series 1box 1folder 4
Correspondence, 1919-1937 and undated series 1box 1folder 5
Correspondence, 1919-1937 and undated series 1box 1folder 6

Series 2: Financial Records, 1922-1933 (1 item)

The series contains one ledger that documents the names of member associations and the dates and amounts of dues paid. In the back of the ledger, the treasurer recorded the financial transactions of the Council.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Ledger, 1922-1933 series 2box 1folder 7

Series 3: Administrative Records, 1919-1940 and undated (155 items)

The series contains the constitution of the Council, meeting records, and membership lists. The meeting records consist of agendas, minutes, and transcripts of speeches or reports made by various presenters. When identifiable, the agenda, minutes, and reports are grouped together by meeting date. Arrangement is alphabetical by type of material and then chronological.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Constitution, [1919] series 3box 1folder 8
Meeting Records, 1919-1928 series 3box 1folder 9
Meeting Records, 1919-1928 series 3box 1folder 10
Meeting Records, 1919-1928 series 3box 1folder 11
Meeting Records, 1919-1928 series 3box 1folder 12
Meeting Records, 1929-1940 and undated series 3box 2folder 1
Meeting Records, 1929-1940 and undated series 3box 2folder 2
Meeting Records, 1929-1940 and undated series 3box 2folder 3
Meeting Records, 1929-1940 and undated series 3box 2folder 4
Membership Lists, 1922-1938 and undated series 3box 2folder 5

Related Material

The University of Maryland Libraries holds the papers of three other Prince George's County associations, the Archives of the Adelphi Citizens Association, the Archives of the Vansville Farmers Club, and the Archives of the Hyattsville Horticultural Society. Both H. J. Patterson and Albert Woods were members of the Council as well as presidents of the University of Maryland. More information about these men can be found in the Records of the President's Office, the Papers of Harry J. Patterson, and the Papers of Albert and Bertha Woods, all held by the University of Maryland Libraries.

For other related archival and manuscript collections, please see the following subject guides.

Selected Search Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the University of Maryland Libraries' Catalog. Researchers desiring related materials about these topics, names, or places may search the Catalog using these headings.